– Some senators are angry they were not consulted over the $1 billion approved by President Buhari for the procurement of security equipment
– According to Bukola Saraki, it was wrong for the executive to take the step without consulting the legislative arm of government
– He added that the friction between both arms of government, he said it goes beyond party affiliations
Senate president Bukola Saraki has said some senators are not happy that President Muhammadu Buhari did not consult with the leadership of the National Assembly before approving the release of $1 billion for the purchase of arms to fight insecurity in the country.
Speaking in Jos, Plateau state, during the Senate Press Corps Retreat on Saturday, April 7, Saraki said it was wrong for the executive to take the step without broaching the matter with the National Assembly, Vanguard reports.
Minister of defence, Mansur Dan Ali, had, last week, said, Buhari gave approval for the purchase of equipment for the military worth $1 billion.
Warning that the executive could not do it alone, the Senate president noted that it was imperative that the legislative arm must be strengthened at all levels of government for Nigeria to truly achieve democracy.
“Just few days ago, there was the issue of providing funding for the purchase of security equipment. In a good environment, such an issue needed to have been discussed with lawmakers. Already, some senators are angry. They said they were not consulted by the executive before such a decision was taken. These are the issues we are talking about,” he said.
On the delay in the process of budget passage and addressing issues of security challenges in the country as well as other national issues, Saraki said it was due to avoidable friction between the executive and legislative arms of government.
Speaking on the friction between both arms of government, he said it goes beyond party affiliations.
“Even during the last administration of President Goodluck Jonathan, when PDP was in charge of the executive and the legislature, there were frictions. It means it is not about the party. It is not about any individual. It is about the system,” he said.
The Senate president also said that the leadership of the National Assembly was not aware of the plan by the executive to get N4.2 billion bonds until Buhari wrote to the Senate and the House of Representatives seeking approval for the issuance of promissory note to offset inherited local debts.
NAIJ.com earlier reported that the chairman, House of Representative committee on Army, Rimande Shawulu, on Thursday, April 5, said President Muhammadu Buhari is courting trouble if he approves one billion dollars for arms procurement without the approval of the National Assembly.
He said there would be serious trouble if any money goes out for such purpose in that the president lacks the constitutional powers to embark on such solo procurement without the mandate of the legislature.